Oneplan Health Insurance & COVID-19: how your cover works & everything else in between
We explore everything you need to know about the Coronavirus (COVID-19), steps you can take to prevent infection and how your private medical cover works with Oneplan Health Insurance.
The Coronavirus has wreaked havoc around the world. We know now that the official name for the virus is COVID-19 and as the pandemic has spread, scientists have started to learn about this virus but we still do not know enough.
According to WHO “Coronaviruses (CoV) are a large family of viruses that cause illness ranging from the common cold to more severe diseases such as Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS-CoV) and Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS-CoV). A novel coronavirus (nCoV) is a new strain that has not been previously identified in humans. Coronaviruses are zoonotic, meaning they are transmitted between animals and people.”
Fast facts on the Novel Coronavirus
Most of this information is readily available and by now, we are aware of so much about the virus but here is just a small recap of everything we’ve learnt. The virus first started in Wuhan City, in the Hubei Province of China in December 2019, since then, it has spread to multiple countries, the first case on the African continent was recorded in Egypt.
The number of COVID-19 infections in South Africa has risen to 596 060 (this number was recorded at the time of writing this article on the 20th of August 2020).
Symptoms of the virus
People who contract the Novel Coronavirus can take from one to 14 days to develop and show symptoms.
Symptoms of infection include:
● Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
The initial symptoms are very similar to those of the common cold.
Doctors can only treat the symptoms of COVID-19 as they arise.
Infections from the virus range from mild to serious. The virus can quickly turn deadly if it leads to pneumonia, respiratory failure, or septic shock. Those most at risk of fatal infections are the elderly and people with weakened immune systems.
How the virus spreads
COVID-19 spreads through the following ways:
- Coughing or sneezing (standing within one meter of an infected person and breathing in droplets that are sneezed or coughed out)
- Close personal contact such as touching others or shaking hands
- Touching a surface or object after an infected person has coughed, touched (after not washing their hands) or sneezed on this surface
How to prevent the spread of COVID-19
- Always wash your hands, especially after coming into contact with people who are sick or when you have been in a public environment (wash your hands with soap and water for 20 seconds)
- Avoid touching your nose, mouth and eyes with unwashed hands
- Keep a good distance between you and others when you cough and cough into a tissue or flexed elbow, make sure you discard of the tissue and wash your hands straight afterwards
- Do not spit in public
- Regularly clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces and objects (like your phone)
What to do if you think you are infected
If you think you might be infected and show any symptoms of COVID-19, then you need to ensure you seek medical attention as soon as possible and share your previous travel history with your doctor.
The National Institute of Communicable Diseases (NICD) recommends that you should only get tested if you display symptoms plus you’ve/you:
1. Been in contact with a confirmed COVID-19 person
2. Travelled to a high-risk country
3. Worked in or been to a healthcare facility treating people with COVID-19
4. Have a severe case of pneumonia with an unknown cause
You can’t simply get a test merely because you want one. Tests are only given to those exhibiting symptoms and those referred by a doctor so if you’re ever in doubt or you’re worried, definitely give your doctor a call.
Oneplan Health Insurance and COVID-19
Here’s what you need to know about your cover with Oneplan Health Insurance.
Let’s look at a few examples…
If you think you might be infected: Cover for day-to-day care and doctor visits
If you are showing symptoms and have made an appointment with your doctor to get tested for the virus then the costs of this consult and tests will be covered under your day-to-day cover for doctor visits.
If your doctor prescribes any scripted medication, these will also be covered according to the limits outlined in your plan.
If you are showing any symptoms of the common cold or infection, then we advise you to see your doctor immediately. (Read: How Preventive Healthcare Can Save Your Life)
Take a look at this blog on how we front you with cash before you see your doctor using our unique Onecard and Oneplan app.
If you are infected and need treatment: Oneplan Hospital Cover benefits
Here’s what you need to know about your coverage benefits if your doctor confirms that you are infected with COVID-19.
If your doctor confirms you are infected and you are treated in the casualty unit of a hospital, then the medical bills will be classified as casualty illness.
“Casualty Illness” means emergency treatments for illnesses that do not require overnight hospital stays. Casualty refers to the emergency department in a private hospital.
Illness In Hospital
If you are hospitalised, then the medical bills will be classified as an illness in hospital and will be covered under this benefit according to the limits outlined in your chosen plan.
Everything you need to know about your hospital cover and private medical treatment is outlined in your policy wording document.
How claiming works with Oneplan
The process of claiming will remain the same (as outlined in your policy).
Steps on how to claim for a doctor visit:
All you have to do is:
- Login to our Oneplan App
- Load a claim
- Money is loaded onto your Onecard
- Swipe at the provider.
Documentation must be submitted to the Oneplan Claims Department within (7) days of the event. Should we not receive a valid invoice, your policy will be suspended until you upload the documentation. If you require a refund, a seven (7) day turnaround time from the date of receipt of the valid proof of payment, will apply.
Steps to follow a medical emergency admission:
- Call 010 001 0141
- Get authorisation from us Hospital Authorisations/NewAdmission: email@example.com
- We send an approval letter to the hospital
- Treatment can begin
COVID-19 will be treated the same as any respiratory condition and will be based on the Triage table found in your policy document.
“Triage” refers to the assessment of emergency patients by the emergency unit into categories of priority based on the urgency of treatment required which includes time frames. The triage category may change based on the change in the condition of the insured or the actual diagnosis and treatment received.
Simply put, it is a way of categorising the urgency of your condition and treatment needed.
Stay healthy and remember that prevention truly is better than cure.
Yours in affordable health insurance,